Billings police crime prevention center indicate an increase in - KULR8.com | News, Weather & Sports in Billings, Montana

Billings police crime prevention center indicate an increase in reported gun thefts

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BILLINGS, Mont. -

A post on the Facebook page of the Billings police crime prevention center indicates an increase in the number of gun thefts being reported.

The post states that hunting rifles in particular are the prime targets before and after hunts. They say it's a crime of opportunity and remind you to secure your firearms and record their serial numbers.

Gun crimes are like many other property crimes we encounter... That is... Crimes of opportunity.

In most cases this is the result of people leaving their guns in plain site. Usually in a vehicle that is not secured, but earlier this year we told you of one report filed with police of 29 guns being stolen from a single home in the Billings heights.

In that case, the guns were locked away, but in a gun cabinet not a gun safe.

In spite of that single theft... Lt. Neil Lawrence cannot say with any certainty that gun thefts are up this year, but he said that gun thefts continue to be a common crime and one that can be prevented.

He said never leave your gun visible, always secure it in a gun safe when not in use and if you discover your firearms have been stolen; he said the first thing is to report it right away.

"The best way for us to get a stolen firearm is obviously when you buy a firearm, make sure you document the serial number," Lt. Neil Lawrence said.
"That's goes for any piece of equipment or property that you have documented so when that item gets stolen and if we come across it, then we can certainly get it back to you. So, that would be the best way for us to get it back to you is with that serial number. "

Lt. Neil Lawrence also mentions that the serial number of your weapon is key in retrieving a stolen firearm. You can also ask your local police department to submit your gun's serial number to the national crime information system database

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